2015 Scholarships – We are all winners!

This post was written by Dr. Krystal Banfield, Dean, Berklee City Music

“We all sat around the computer awaiting the answer! When I opened the college scholarship computer portal and saw that I was awarded a college scholarship! My entire family burst into tears. I had received the City Music full tuition college scholarship. Thank you! ”

This was shared by one of our City Music students having just received a scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music. The African proverb “it takes a village to raise a child,” is true. We all have had some influence on our students, which has contributed to their success. Yet, how can we know success, if the evidence does not arrive in the way of a scholarship? These are questions we readily ask as we prepare our students by building their skills and guiding them so that they would have the capability to attain choices—to pursue their dreams, to be leaders in their communities, to have purpose, to be responsible, to have the ability to enrich their own lives and the lives of others. In doing so, we know it takes being committed to a concentric circle that includes you, your students and their families, their teachers, schools and the greater communities. But how can we create this for more of our students who by national statistics still fall far behind their more advantaged peers? It is possible to leverage our relationships collectively, to share what works, and be determined in our efforts as we look to endeavor earlier preparation for each student. Let us establish a national dialogue, with a goal to create a consistent standard that provides opportunities for each student who joins our community. But, first let’s celebrate our next cohort of 2015 scholarship awardees!

15 – Awarded City Music College Scholarships
Camden Repertory Theater
Campus Club Milledgeville
City Music Boston
Cleveland Music Settlement
East Bay Center-Performing Arts
Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center
Phoenix Conservatory of Music
Project RYTMO
Richmond Youth Jazz Guild
Stax Music Academy

120 – City Music Summer Scholarships
2xSalt Ministry
A Place Called Home
Bahama Village Music Program
Boys & Girls Harbor
Camden Repertory Theater
Campus Club Milledgeville
City Music Boston
Cleveland Music Settlement
East Bay Center-Performing Arts
Escuela de Bellas Artes de Carolina
Fort Hayes Metro Education Center
Jazz Aspen Snowmass
Lincoln Park Perform Arts Center
Motivational Edge
New Jersey Performing Arts Center
One World
Philadelphia Clef Club
Phoenix Conservatory of Music
Project RYTMO
Richmond Youth Jazz Guild
Sarah McLachlan School of Music
Sitar Center
Stax Music Academy
Tipitina’s Foundation
Wilmington Youth Jazz Band
Woodlawn Musical Arts/Audiostate 55

Emcee Kiki Haynes (Actress, Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse) and Walter McCarty (Assistant Coach, Boston Celtics) joined Berklee President Roger Brown, Associate Vice President for Education Outreach and Executive Director of Berklee City Music J. Curtis Warner, and Dean of City Music Krystal Banfield to present 18 Berklee City Music Network Students with full-tuition scholarships to Berklee College of Music
2014 College Scholarship Recipients with emcee Kiki Haynes, Walter McCarty, Berklee President Roger Brown, Associate Vice President for Education Outreach J. Curtis Warner, and Dean of City Music Krystal Banfield

BCMN On the Road: Woodlawn

This is post #3 in the guest series by BCMN Registrar Andrew Sammut after his visit to 4 BCMN sites this spring.

Woodlawn + Audiostate 55

Arin and Andrew’s third stop on their southeastern trip took them to Woodlawn Musical Arts, Entertainment and Industry Program of Birmingham, AL. Conducted by state-of-the-art local recording studio Audiostate 55, Woodlawn provides a music technology course to students from local schools, a summer music camp that serves over two hundred students and opportunities to perform at local community events.

Audiostate 55
Audiostate 55

When we arrived, Dr. Henry Panion, President at Audiostate 55, explained some of the projects he is working on with students at the local public schools including music videos to celebrate several local and national events. We then had an opportunity to observe one of the music technology courses that Woodlawn provides as an elective for students at a nearby high school. These students use PULSE in conjunction with other software to learn the basics of sound production and recording technology. We also got to meet members of the school faculty as well as the recording and business staff at Audiostate 55.

Audiostate 55
Audiostate 55 Music Technology

Dr. Panion then gave us a tour of the Birmingham community, including the impressive musical facilities at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where Dr. Panion teaches as both University Professor of Music and Co-Director of Music Technology. We also visited the Woodlawn Foundation offices, which engages and enriches the Birmingham community through the Woodlawn music program as well partnerships providing academic tutoring, mixed income housing, locally sourced produce and other efforts at “holistic neighborhood revitalization.”

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The support of these teachers, philanthropic partners, engineers and administrators allows Woodlawn Musical Arts, Entertainment and Industry Program to provide greater opportunities, musically as well as academically, to students in the Birmingham community. With its deep roots in the community and roads to Berklee College and beyond, City Music is proud to partner with this grassroots, globally minded organization.

Get to know Houston Kendrick from BCMN site Audiostate 55

What was your inspiration for writing “Mine?”
Clinton Green and I wrote this song after just sitting down and talking about life.
How did you come up with the concept for writing “Mine?”
We concluded that we should write a song about young men having the confidence or wishing they had the confidence to purse their first crush.
What were some of the most memorable aspects of recording your single?
My most memorable aspect of the video was the day the video was shot. We arrived at Audiostate 55 at 6 am, met the dancers and they were really cool guys. We then started rehearsing the moves. At that point, I said to myself: this is happening.
Do you have a band that you worked with on the single, and if so, what was it like to work with them?
I did not have a band. But I imagine that if I get a chance to perform “Mine” with a band, I would have as much fun as I had with Clint, James, Danny, and Dr. Panion in the studio.
How did Audiostate 55 Entertainment Company help/inspire you throughout the process?
Well Audiostate did not inspire me as much as Dr. Panion did. Dr. Panion confirmed that I CAN SING.  Dr. Panion and the Video Director Brandon Mason came up with the storyline for the video.
What advice can you share with other students who are interested in releasing a single?
Find your Dr. Henry Panion!  Birmingham has a great musical community. I would recommend to any young person to find a successful musician and ask them to listen to you. Once you have been heard, listen to their feedback and follow their advice.

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Berklee City Music Welcomes Woodlawn Musical Arts, Entertainment and Industry Program

Photo credit: Woodlawn Music Tech

In a city where history is profound and culture is abundant, the music scene in Birmingham, Alabama has infinite potential. Up until six years ago that potential was essentially untapped. “Opportunities for students to participate in arts-related programs are minimal. The need for expanded opportunities for learning arts technology and to gain exposure to the entertainment industry are virtually non-existent,” explains Dr. Henry Panion, III, President of the Woodlawn Musical Arts, Entertainment and Industry Program.

Photo credit: Woodlawn Music Tech at Audiostate 55 Entertainment

Fortunately, Dr. Panion established the program as the education component of Audiostate 55 Recording Studios and Entertainment Company. The programs offered through Audiostate 55 are a result of many years of designing community arts programs, continued learning teacher training, job shadowing, and professional development in the area of contemporary music, music technology, and the entertainment industry.


Woodlawn is one of Berklee City Music Network’s newest members and the first member from Alabama. We  look forward to working with them and seeing their students flourish.